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Product: Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse
Company: Microsoft
Website: http://www.microsoft.com
Estimated Street Price:
$44.95
Review By: Robert Stein

One of the latest hardware devices coming out of Redmond isn’t for the average user - correction, the average Desktop PC user. That is right; Microsoft has just released the Microsoft Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse in its second attempt to release a hardware product specifically for laptop/notebook consumers, after the very successful Notebook Optical Mouse released a few seasons ago. Using patented Optical Technology and sporting a creative and stylish design, Microsoft is again trying to make a big impression with such a tiny mouse - in a new wireless form. Does the mouse live up to its promises? Read on to find out.

  • New! Snap-in receiver conserves battery life by automatically turning off power when snapped into the bottom of the mouse. One AA battery lasts three months for the average user,1 reducing inconvenient work stoppages. Designed small for added convenience, the receiver plugs directly into any notebook computer for at least three feet of wireless freedom. The receiver also pivots to enhance your reception.

  • New! Enhanced Microsoft Optical Technology delivers accurate and smooth tracking on virtually any surface2 — even a pant leg —
    so you can say goodbye to your mouse pad permanently.

  • New! Compact, ambidextrous shape and design enhancements deliver comfort and mobility. With three buttons featuring sculpted finger grooves and rubber grips on the side and bottom, your fingers can stay properly positioned.

  • New! Stylish colors, including Winter Blue and Slate, offer more options to personalize your computing space, whether in your living room or on a plane.

  • A unique translucent scroll wheel allows you to move through documents and Web sites quickly, without having to click on the scroll bar — perfect for computing in tight spaces.

Setup & Installation 

The setup of this mouse is decisively simple; just plug the adapter into the USB port and go through the mouse setup through the default "Wireless Link" functionality in Control Panel.  You can of course download Microsoft’s IntelliPoint software free from their website, to change some functionality - but the software is not needed for the mouse to run fine. This mouse also supports some Macintosh platforms (see below).

IntelliPoint 5.2 Mouse Software

IntelliPoint software enables you to customize the unique features of your Microsoft® mouse to fit your needs. With IntelliPoint mouse software, you can reassign each mouse button—including the wheel button—to perform a command or keyboard shortcut, like Undo, Close, or an application-specific function. You can also modify mouse settings, such as pointer speed and updated horizontal scrolling. IntelliPoint 5.2 even offers biometrics support for advanced identity management. If you have a Bluetooth mouse or keyboard, you will need to have Windows XP with Service Pack 2 installed.

Design

The Microsoft Notebook Optical Mouse is a favorite here at ActiveWin, so we are holding the new wireless version to the strictest standards. This design of this mouse is superb. Sizing up at 4 inches long, 2.25 inches wide and 1.5 inch high; this mouse weighs only a few ounces. Of course, the mouse is a little heavier and larger than the predecessor - but that is to be expected when we are getting rid of the cord! The mouse has varying degrees of a slate finish. The mouse features only two buttons and a wheel, so if you depend on a ton of programmable buttons and such this mouse is not for you. The wheel is transparent so it adds a nice effect with the light sensor. I also notice the scroll wheel “scrolls” much tighter than previous Microsoft mice which is also nice. The mouse fits perfectly in my laptop bag, which is important because regular size mice never fit nicely.

         

Microsoft designed the mouse to be ambidextrous, so both right and left handed users can use this mouse without any problem. The size makes this mouse easy to use for long periods of times, without irritating the wrist (something I particularly find important). The ingenious wireless USB adapter fits perfectly into the bottom side of the mouse for storage purposes when not in use. The end of the adapter rotes to fit snuggly alongside your laptop, with a "connect" light on the end to show when the mouse is properly connected. When you push the the IntelliEye logo in front, the front lid lifts off to make room for a AA battery, which I think Microsoft made quite slick since size is of the essence.

Let’s not forget the Optical Technology. The technology is now up to 6,000 frames per second and works smoothly on most surfaces. It has been broken-in well with previous mice, so you know you won’t have any problems.

Final Comments

How It Grades

Installation: 95%
Performance: 99%
Design: 95%
Price/Value: 88%
Overall: 94%

This mouse is perfect for the mobile user. The Microsoft Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse has a great design and is small enough to bring along any trip, and in combination with the Optical technology will work anywhere on anything, too. Even though it is a little more expensive than the Microsoft Notebook Optical Mouse, the design itself is worth it and the price will surely drop in the future. Notebook Optical Mice users who think the cord is not long enough may find this mouse particularly useful. For those of you who want the latest Microsoft hardware and are frequent laptop users I definitely recommend the Microsoft Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse.

Specs & Package
Overall Score 94%
Version Reviewed Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse
Release Date Out Now
The Good Points Optical Technology
Design
Wireless Adapter
The Bad Points Slightly Expensive
Similar Product Logitech Mini Optical Mouse
Microsoft Notebook Optical Mouse
System Requirements Windows 98, Me, 2000, XP, 2003
USB Port
 Mac OS 10.1 or higher (OS X not supported)

 

 

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